Royal Caribbean International has made a change to their “Crown and Anchor Society” loyalty program, though it only impacts guests who have achieved the highest levels – Diamond, Diamond Plus, and Pinnacle Club members.
The change impacts how the redemption of popular drink vouchers, and is intended to reduce miscommunication and errors with how the vouchers are processed.
Drink Benefit Change
While the number of drinks loyal cruisers receive for free is not changing, how the drinks will be redeemed will now be more closely monitored. In an email sent to impacted guests, the cruise line stated:
“Effective on sailings starting this Friday, November 4th, we’ll have all members sign their check when using any beverage vouchers.”
Previously, guests redeeming the vouchers only used their cruise SeaPass ID cards for the free “purchase” without needing to sign a receipt. This had led to confusion when a guest may not have wanted to use a voucher for a less expensive drink, or if vouchers were incorrectly applied.
Guests might not notice such errors until later reviewing their account statements, possibly much later in a cruise, or if they were informed they had run out of drink vouchers for the day, even if they couldn’t remember having redeemed all of them.
Now, by signing a receipt, guests have the opportunity to immediately review the transaction as well as note how many of their daily vouchers have been redeemed and how many remain.
The cruise line hopes that this will reduce confusion, and subsequently minimize the need for trips to the Guest Services desk onboard as passengers seek to correct such errors or oversights.
“While it’s a little more work for our teams, by having you have your hard check – you can better control both your count and the proper application!” the email read. “We appreciate your loyalty and openness to helping us make your cruising experience the best there is!”
Guests at the Diamond loyalty level (80 cruise points) currently receive four daily drink vouchers, while Diamond Plus (175 points) guests receive five and Pinnacle Club (700 points) guests receive six.
The vouchers may be redeemed for any beverage up to $13, but the vouchers do not “stack” and must be used on appropriate days – for example, a guest will not be able to redeem any unused vouchers from embarkation day later in the cruise.
Guests at the lower Gold, Platinum, and Emerald loyalty levels do not receive any drink vouchers.
Loyal Royal Caribbean cruise travelers earn points for every day sailed with the cruise line, with double points for booking suite staterooms. As cruisers sail with the line more and more, the benefits they can enjoy with each loyalty tier increase.
The free drink vouchers are one of the most popular benefits available to past guests, while other popular rewards include priority consideration for spa treatments, show seating, and dining reservations, as well as exclusive lounge access and other perks.
All Royal Caribbean International guests are automatically enrolled in the cruise line’s loyalty program after their first cruise, with immediate access to special benefits such as priority notification of new ships and sales promotions, exclusive offers, and loyalty newsletters.